Show ContentsFoose History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Foose is of Anglo-Saxon origin and came from when the family lived in Doultin and Shepton Mallet on either side of Fosse Way. The surname Foose is a topographic surname which literally means "ditch of a fortified place" [1] [2] but two sources claim the name to mean "waterfall." [3] [4]

Anciently, the name could have been Norman as the Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae shows Geoffry, Hubert, Ralph, Richard, Stephen de Fossa, or De la Fosse of Normandy in 1198. [5]

Early Origins of the Foose family

The surname Foose was first found in Sussex where John del Fosse was recorded in 1199. Later the Hundredorum Rolls of 1272 listed Roger de Fossa and Richard de la Fosse of England, but no counties were listed. [5]

The Curia Regis Rolls include an entry for Richard atte Fosse, 1 Edward II (during the first year of the reign of King Edward II.) Later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed Johannes Fosse and Willelmus de Fosse. [3]

Over in Somerset, records there show: Richard de Fosse; Margery atte Fosse; and Robert atte Fosse. All were recorded 1 Edward III. [6]

"In Somerset the surname is recorded from Doulting and Shepton Mallet, on each side of the Fosse Way, along which lie three farms named Fosse in Wiltshire, four in Warwickshire and two in Nottinghamshire." [7]

Early History of the Foose family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Foose research. Another 112 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1284, 1327, 1379, 1787, 1804, 1811, 1814, 1822, 1830, 1837, 1839, 1840, 1844, 1850, 1853, 1865 and 1870 are included under the topic Early Foose History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Foose Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Foose are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. The variations of the name Foose include: Foss, Fosse, Fos, Voss, Foose, Foos and others.

Early Notables of the Foose family

Notables of this surname at this time include: Edward Foss (1787-1870), English biographer, eldest son of Edward Smith Foss, solicitor, of 36 Essex Street, Strand, London, by Anne, his wife, daughter of Dr. William Rose of Chiswick, born in Gough Square, Fleet Street, 16 Oct. 1787. He was educated under Dr. Charles Burney, his mother's brother-in-law, at Greenwich, and remained there until he was articled in 1804 to his father, whose partner he became in 1811. In 1822 he became a member of the Inner Temple, but never proceeded further towards a call to the bar. Upon his father's death, in...
Another 141 words (10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Foose Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Foose migration to the United States +

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Foose or a variant listed above:

Foose Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • George Foose, who landed in New York in 1795 [8]


  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  3. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  5. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  6. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  7. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  8. Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)


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